Sep 1.jpgsep1sp

< 

Little Lambs Eat Ivy

Sep 1.jpg

Martins Bank’s North Eastern Players turn their sophisticated talents to a three act comedy by Noel Langley, entitled “Little Lambs Eat Ivy”. Amateur dramatics is hard at the best of times in the days when the working week is over forty hours long, and the dedication required to pull of a production with even basic good values is indeed commendable.  What is fascinating about the reviews of these shows in Martins Bank Magazine, is the way the editor achieves a balanced critique. He is not afraid to criticise, nor does he hold back on the compliments, as once again the North Eastern Players pull four great performances out of the bag at Gateshead’s Little Theatre. 

Sep 1.jpg

 

Sep 1.jpg

For their autumn production the North-Eastern Players chose Noel Langley's three-act comedy “Little Lambs Eat Ivy”, and the play was presented at the Little Theatre, Gateshead, for five nights, November 18th to 22nd. Of the eleven characters, five were making their first appearance with the Players, three of them for the first time on any stage and under the talented handling of Nora Wilkie as producer, the courageous and commendable policy of infusing a constant supply of new blood in spite of the availability of most of the old stagers resulted in the achievement of another marked success. In fact, the policy has resulted in the production of a new bright star for the company in Nancy Eaves who played the role of Lady Buckering.

Sep 1.jpg

Left to Right: Nancy Eaves, Dorothy Turnbull, David Batey, Irene Tait,

Pat Wallace, Peter Prest and Charles Knight.

Sep 1.jpg

Everything happens to her yet she never for one moment forgets her breeding and we are spared the spectacle of over-acting such a common amateur fault with a part like this. She was the discovery of the production. The other quite outstanding actress was Pat Wallace as the youngest daughter. She played this tempestuous part with complete realism and the rough and tumble scene was the best thing of its kind we have seen in a Martins Bank production. The success of Irene Tait as the wife of the boorish, self-centred, “arty” writer, derived from her complete contrast to her husband and the more he antagonised the audience (and he certainly did) the sweeter did she appear.  Irene knows when to play in a minor key and in the restraint of her performance lay its success.

Donald Thompson as the aforementioned aspirant to literary immortality looked and acted every inch of the part and we disliked him so much that it was quite a shock to realise when we went behind the scenes that it was only Donald after all. Stephen Futers has that happy knack of making an attractive character most en­dearing and his diction and bearing as the family doctor left nothing to be desired. Gerald Eaves tackled the part of that bug­bear of amateur actors, the manservant, and though more at home in his earlier roles as a captain of police and a detective he, never­theless, did as well as most amateurs would have done. The dropping of aspirates wasn't very convincing but the acting from the time of the jewel theft to his final expulsion carried the audience completely. Dorothy Turnbull as the maternity nurse had all our sympathy and amid the distrac­tions of this crazy household she upheld the dignity of the profession in the very best tradition. The part of the expectant father was played by David Batey who was appearing for the first time. It is a difficult part to play and because of his limited experience he was not able to get all the laughs to which the part was entitled. Nevertheless, his performance was very com­mendable and most promising and when he becomes more seasoned he will be a source of strength to the company.

G K Eaves and  D Thompson

Charles Knight as the landlord's representative who had called for the rent gave his usual polished performance and Ayleen Brown, another newcomer to the Players, gave an excellent portrayal of the third of Lady Buckering's daughters. Possessed of a good stage presence, gowned beautifully, and with a poise befitting her birth she portrayed the part of the daughter of a lady admirably. In some respects Peter Prest had the most difficult part of all to play as the slightly neurotic, immature, young idiot of a lover to Bicky, so excellently and stormily played by Pat Wallace. Being so divorced from reality it is far from easy to be convincing when the action makes you knock at someone's front door and upon its being opened, unceremoniously dash in and run upstairs to the room of the lady you desire to see. This had to happen on more than one occasion and Peter is to be congratulated on the manner in which he portrayed this far from easy part. The stage setting was most attractive and Bob Wilkie, as Stage Manager, has every reason to be delighted with the outcome of his part of the job.

Sep 1.jpg

Left to Right: Nancy Eaves, Ayleen Brown and Charles Knight

Sep 1.jpg

Left to Right:  David Batey, Nancy Eaves, Peter Prest,  Pat Wallace, 

Charles Knight, Ayleen Brown and Stephen Futers.

Sep 1.jpg

Sep 1.jpg

Gutinfo.jpg